It’s that time of the year that we’ve all been waiting for … ice cream season! Summer weather has us dreaming of days spent lounging poolside, frilly bikinis and of course all of the indulgences that go with it! One of our all-time favourite summer foods are ice cream sandwiches: I mean, what is there not to love?
We decided to put a Hawaiian twist on this classic treat by making these Tropical ‘Nice’ Cream Sandwiches… get ready to wow your guests!
Traditional ice cream sandwiches are pretty heavy on the calories, so to lighten them up AND make them vegan we used Almond Breeze (vanilla flavour) and added some coconut cream to give them the rich taste and texture! I love the taste of the Almond Breeze, it gives these ice cream sandwiches the perfect hint of almond flavour and like that it’s fortified with important nutrients like calcium. I learned a lot about Almond Breeze recently in Sacramento during an incredible Orchard Experience tour, and have a new-found appreciation for the hard work and care that goes into every carton of the product. The farmers care a lot about the land, and I was so impressed with the new technology that they are using to help reduce the amount of water used (water efficiency has improved by 33% since the 90’s). I also found out that nothing goes to waste in the growing process: even the shells are used for energy production!
So back to these crazy good ice cream sandwiches; we tried making the coconut cookies both ways (vegan and non-vegan) and actually preferred the vegan ones! They were chewier and let the coconut flavor shine through, consider us sold!
You’ll need a biscuit cutter (we used one that is 3” in diameter from this set) and ideally an ice cream maker and a large piping bag fitted with a large round tip. Fear not if you don’t have these items, we’ve created the recipe so that you can make it even if you don’t have an ice cream maker and a piping bag! These take a couple of extra steps to put together, and we found that a couple extra hands makes the process a bit easier…and more fun! I mean, do you really need an excuse to crack a bottle of rosé with the girls and make ice cream sandwiches? You can make these in advance and freeze them so that they are ready for your guests.
Makes 8 Ice Cream Sandwiches
- 1 Tbsp. chia seeds, ground
- 3 Tbsp. water
- 1 ¼ c. unbleached all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ¼ tsp. salt
- ½ c. coconut oil
- ¼ c. sugar
- ½ c. brown sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 Tbsp. Almond Breeze, vanilla
- 1 c. unsweetened shredded coconut
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350F.
- Combine the ground chia seeds with the water, mix together, and set aside.
- In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda and salt: whisk together.
- In a large bowl beat the coconut oil with the sugars using an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the chia seed and water mixture and the vanilla and beat again on medium speed until it’s smooth. Add the flour mixture, coconut and the Almond Breeze and beat the mixture until it is well-combined.
- Roll approximately 2 tablespoons of the dough in your hands to form a large ball, place on the parchment paper and press down using your hands to flatten to ¼” thickness. Press a round cookie (or biscuit) cutter down into the centre, remove the excess dough from around the outside of the cutter, and remove the cutter so that you’re left with a perfect circle. Repeat with the remaining dough until you have formed 16 cookies, reusing that extra dough that you trimmed from the cutter to make the remaining cookies.
- Bake the cookies until the edges are JUST golden brown, 7-9 minutes, and remove from the oven to cool. The cookies will look slightly underdone, but you want them to be chewy.
Tropical ‘Nice Cream’
- 3 frozen large bananas, broken into chunks
- 1 c. Almond Breeze, vanilla
- 1 can (400 ml) coconut cream
- 3 c. frozen pineapple chunks
- 2 Tbsp. honey or agave
- 1 c. flaked unsweetened coconut, toasted
- Freeze the ice cream maker tub if you’re using it OR prepare a 9×13” pan by lining it with wax or parchment paper if you aren’t using an ice cream maker (see below).
- Using a good blender, blend all of the ‘ice cream’ ingredients except the coconut flakes until smooth. Follow either of the two following directions:
- ICE CREAM MACHINE & PIPING METHOD: If you are using the ice cream machine, pour the mixture into the tub and run the ice cream maker until the mixture has thickened up, approximately 10-15 minutes, following the manufacturer’s directions on your ice cream machine. Using an icing bag fitted with a large tip, pipe the ‘ice cream’ evenly in a circle on the base of each cookie, topping it with another cookie (both bottoms of the cookies should be touching the ice cream) to create a sandwich.
- COOKIE CUTTER METHOD: If you don’t have an ice cream maker, simply pour the blended ‘ice cream’ mixture into the prepared 9×13” pan, spread it evenly with a rubber spatula, and place in the freezer until firm but not completely frozen, about 3 hours. Remove the pan from the freezer, and using the same cookie cutter that you used for the cookies, cut 8 rounds out of the ice cream, cutting each as close together as possible and placing each round onto the bottom side of a cookie. Top each with another cookie (bottom side touching the ice cream) and repeat until they are all assembled.
- Roll the sides of each sandwich in the flaked coconut, pressing it in to stick and place the sandwich on a baking sheet in the freezer and repeat with the remaining cookies. Place the sandwiches on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until you are ready to serve them, pulling them out of the freezer 10 minutes before serving.
Photography by Mackenzie Jane Photo
This post was sponsored by Almond Breeze, all opinions are my own!